Isn’t it hard to imagine cooking without garlic? A clove of garlic does wonders to your food, igniting and exciting your palate like no other herb can do. In fact, garlic is liberally used in western cuisine too. But did you know that besides its culinary properties, garlic is also a medicinal herb?

This herb was first used in Ancient times by the Egyptians to treat wounds, infections, tumours and intestinal parasites. No wonder they called it the great protector. Modern scientific research confirms these ancient uses of garlic, including its ability to lower cholesterol and blood pressure. It is the sulphur-containing compounds of garlic that lend the herb its spicy aroma and are responsible for many of its healing properties. These compounds lower cholesterol by stimulating the release of bile by the gall bladder and by decreasing the production of cholesterol in the liver. In addition, garlic compounds gently lower blood pressure by slowing the production of hormones related to blood pressure.

This wonder drug aids digestion, relieves earache, acts as an expectorant and as an antiseptic. Garlic also increases the flow of urine thereby killing thread worms and roundworms in your body. Besides, its ability to expel mucous by liquefying it, can help you control your cold, cough and other respiratory tract infections. This amazing herb has also demonstrated the ability to protect against a variety of environmental toxins. Garlic’s sulphur compounds are potent antioxidants which protect cell membranes and DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) from damage.

The question often asked is what is the best form of garlic to use? Raw or lightly cooked garlic contains a potent array of sulphur compounds which give garlic its healing properties; however these also lend garlic its pungent taste. But whichever form you choose, just go for it and see how this miracle nutrient seasons not only your food but also your life.